December 19, 2012 | LXXII, No. 38

Report: bragging robber says he’ll do it again

Coulee Dam police have been advised that a man sought in an alleged armed robbery of the Smoke Shop might do it again.

Phillip Cody Ruiz

Police received word from Colville Tribal Police that a man reported he had heard that Phillip Cody Ruiz, 23, the man sought in the Nov. 27 robbery, had told others on the Colville Indian Reservation that he was going to rob the store again.

Town Police Officer Glenn Steffler went to the Smoke Shop to advise Cassandra Watters, the clerk who was robbed the first time, about what had been heard.

She told Steffler that several people had been in the store that day, Dec. 10, to tell her that Ruiz might be back again.

She told the officer that she was told that Ruiz had been bragging about the robbery and believes he can’t be caught by authorities, according to a written police report.

She also told officer Steffler that Ruiz had been seen walking around town a lot.

Ruiz reportedly walked into the store Nov. 27, and told Watters that he wanted to purchase some cigarettes, but had left his wallet out in his vehicle. He went out to get his wallet and allegedly returned with his hand in his pocket, suggesting a gun, asking for the money in the till.

She gave him a reported $1,200 from the till. At that time she told police that Ruiz had been in the shop a number of times and was known there.

Right after the robbery, Watters called owner Billy Nicholson to report the incident. Nicholson met police at the store and showed them a picture of Ruiz he had on his cellphone.

Police have been looking for Ruiz since the first incident but have been unable to find him.

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